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News for Marion Community Schools

Two MHS students advance in elite national math competition

Posted: by Patricia Gibson, Communications Director
News Blog Category - News Two Marion High School math students have achieved a feat unheard of in at least a decade in Marion.

Senior Nicholas Spitzer and junior Elizabeth Wuertley have advanced to the second round of the American Mathematics Competition, the first step on the path to the International Mathematical Olympiad.


In all, 80 students at MHS participated in the American Mathematics Competition, half taking the AMC 10 (for freshmen and sophomores) and half taking AMC12 (for juniors and seniors). Nationwide, more than 150,000 typically take these tests, which consist of 25 multiple-choice questions. Approximately 5 percent of those taking each test qualify to advance to the second round — putting Nicholas and Elizabeth in elite company!

Next up, they will take the American Invitational Mathematics Exam, a 3-hour test consisting of 15 open-ended questions, on March 7. The top scoring students on the AIME are invited to take part in the USA Mathematical Olympiad, a nine-hour test taken over two days, consisting of 6 essay/proof examinations.

A few dozen students are typically selected based on the results of that test to take part in a summer program in preparation for the International Mathematical Olympiad — in which only a select few students compete on the U.S. team. The IMO brings together teams from more than 100 countries each year. The U.S. has won this competition for the past two years.

This national competition series is facilitated by the Mathematical Association of America and is dedicated to developing the next generation of problem solvers through friendly competition. We are so proud of Nicholas and Elizabeth, and we wish them continued success in the competition!